Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Somebody give me a @#$% cup of coffee!

September 28, 2010

Monday morning was trying to tell me something.  I had just worked all weekend, so it isn't the typical Monday morning other people face.  Mondays are supposed to be good for me since I am off on Tuesdays.  However, yesterday started with Beth offering me coffee in the morning.  She had not made any because she isn't drinking caffeine right now (health nut), so I turned her down.  Seemed kinda cruel to drink coffee in front of someone  who loves coffee but has sworn off of it.  I did not think it would matter since I normally stop at BP on my way to work for coffee anyway. 

I love me a BP 20 oz mostly cappuccino topped off with french roast coffee.  MMMMM!  And for a mere $1.09-buy 3, your 4th one is free.  Monday was going to be my free one.  Perfection! 

I arrived at BP only to find that they had waxed half of the floors in the store thus roping off the side of the store containing my precious coffee.  I looked at the wet floor, looked over at the coffee, and tried to decide if I could successfully scale the tops of the fixtures to reach the coffee oasis.  And then escape without getting arrested.  Hey, no big deal I decided, there is another BP on the way to work.  I do not usually frequent this one since they do not give me a 4th coffee for free.  Nonetheless, today they would get my money.  All $1.09 of it.  Yes, I am a tight wad.

I arrived at BP #2 and entered the store.  No caution tape equals good sign.  Actually, in this particular neighbor HOOD, no caution tape is a VERY good sign.  I approached my beloved cappuccino machine to find two young ladies pondering their cup filling decision.  Empty cup in hands, they seemed ready to dispense.  5 minutes later we have: empty cups still in hand, comments about making this poor man wait for his coffee, and to hot chocolate or not to hot chocolate musings going at a snail pace.  I glance at the machine only to find that they do not even have the flavor of cappuccino I prefer anyway, so I leave the store.  My Target does not have a Starbucks (which is the way I like it), but they do possess my friend, frenchie vanilla cappuccino machine.  I knew I would have to wait until after 8:00, but what are the chances someone will poke this coffee-less dog before 8:00. 

"Take me on a store tour," says my boss.  Excellent.  So we tour, all goes well even though I can feel the hamster that makes my brain wheel go round struggling to stay awake.

Finally, I arrive at Target Cafe, money in hand, ready to order my large coffee.  Order complete, cup in hand, we are almost home.  I press the button on the cappuccino machine, and out pours clear, hot water.  I pour out the hot water as this does happen sometimes if you're the first one there.  I press the button again. more hot water.  Grrr!  My mind flashes to a scene with caution tape and me in cuffs being led away from The Target, while in the background flames shoot out of the cappuccino machine. 

I am not in jail today.  I poured myself some regular coffee with some French vanilla creamer, and went to read my email.  I let the young lady at Target Cafe know that the machine needed tending to, and was able to go back later to refill my cup with the nectar that is my cappuccino.

I know that you may be thinking, "Is it possible that God wants you to stop drinking coffee?"  You and me, no longer friends.  God loves me and would never take this pleasure away from me.  I spit on your coffee free world.  Of course, my spit is a nice warm brown color as I have had two cups of coffee this morning already.  Hyped up a little, yeah maybe, why do you ask?

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Are you ready for some football?

September 18, 2010

Last night was the first home game for the local high school.  Beth and I went together.  Because she loves to go to football games?  No.  Because CJ had gone up there to meet his buddies and hang out?  Yes.  Because CJ's "girl of interest" was also going to be there?  Heck yeah.

So Beth and I went to Cheesecake Factory for dinner without CJ because we are mean like that, loaded with money, and party every Friday night.  No, no, and no again.  CJ was meeting his buddies at Penn Station for food, Beth and I split a burger and bought no cheesecake, we had a gift card, and going out to eat sounded way better than cooking.  Not even any alcohol for either of us.  We are animals that party all right.

So we then walked over to the high school and watched the game.  At half time, we left as we both had very tiring weeks and we could hear the couches calling us all the way from home.  On the way out, we saw CJ and his group of friends...and Taylor.  I tried not to stare, or investigate, or walk over and see what was going on.  It was like a bug being attracted to a blue light and knowing it was a bad idea.  CJ saw us as we neared and gave us one of those waves.  You know, the kind that is impulsive because he likes us and wants to acknowledge our presence, but also wants to warn us off before we hit the blue light.  It worked.  We turned left and headed home.  It looked like they were having fun and staying out of trouble, so we felt good about the situation.  CJ made it home safe and sound an hour later. 

I think it helped that I was able to have a teaching moment with CJ on Wednesday night due to the misdoings of the trainee I had this week.  He turned in a time card for time he did not actually work, forgetting that Target has cameras and he was not going to get away with it.  I was able to use this as an example for CJ that getting caught in a lie only serves to take a bad situation and make it horribly irreparable.  Planting those seeds in his little sponge brain is good.  He knows that if he spray paints the walls of the high school and runs through the halls singing "I want to be an Airborne Ranger, I want to live a life of danger", that chances are, word will get back to us.  And he may have to become and air born ranger...when my foot meets his back side.

So today, CJ has a cross country meet in an hour.  I have told him that he will get a quarter for every runner he finishes in front of.  I have always been a fan of bribery...er...incentives to reach a goal.  I think that when you are running two miles, it is way too easy to finish in 34th place when finishing in 29th place would take a lot of extra effort and still get you no accolades.  In this case, it would increase his earnings by $1.25.  He has gone up to the school to take the bus already, so I can go get some money out of his wallet to pay him his incentive.

 Is that wrong?  Are there cameras up there?  Okay, I will do it right.  Big brother is watching.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Medicine cabinet for nosy Marvin

September 14, 2010

You can look through our drawers because our cabinet is just a mirror and does not open.  See below. 

It's a bird, it's a plane..grab me the fly swatter.

September 14, 2010

I will start with a health update.  Apparently, there is a bug coming over here from India that we cannot combat.  Sounds like something from a movie, but it was right there in my free Tuesday paper. 

First about the paper.  I think Beth is wondering if I am having relations with our paper delivery person since every once in a while we receive a paper on Tuesday mornings.  I am off every Tuesday, so it is nice to have a paper.  We only subscribe to the Sunday edition, and we do receive papers on the holidays as our local Cincinnati Enquirer loves us, but we are not supposed to get a Tuesday paper.  Or any other day paper.  Yet, there I was this morning reading about the Red's win last night in black and white instead of the multi-colored Internet version.  Why is this better?  Well, I prefer to not take the computer with me into the....ya know...terlit.  I can never figure out where to put the mouse.

I will use this forum to categorically deny any improper relationship with the paper carrier.  Beth, I have not had relations with that man.  And, eeeeeeew.

Second, the India bug.  It is a bug that wears a little costume with a "B" emblazoned on the front, because they are calling it a superbug.  Able to leap over any antibiotic with a single bound.  Able to travel the globe through the air.  It is a bacteria, so even though the the persons affected with it here in North America recently received medical treatment in India, it can be transmitted from person to person through contact.  So go wash your hands right now.

You back?  Hand check.  Okay.

Maybe I should not be glad about this free paper thing.  TMI.

So I assume you really wanted to know about my health.  My sibs are obviously concerned since they have diligently read my blog to ensure I am well.  Thank you for your concern.

I went to the neurologist last week and he gave me a series of tests and declared me a complete hypochondriac.  Medically speaking.  He could find nothing wrong.  Nothing in my brain anyway.  So I am good.  Even that Nystagma thing he could not find with my eye-twitchy self.  Awesome.  I am relieved since the other symptoms I had can be traced to stress.  The eye-spasmy thing was not stress related.  So all I have to do is get rid of my stress and I can go back to sleeping without ear issues.

Actually, I have been sleeping much better.  My ear pressure has decreased, but not because I have less stress-believe you me!  Work is a stress sandwich.  "Would you like extra trainees with your sandwich?  How about some back to school transition into Halloween with sprinklings of big wig's visits on top?  Maybe some inventory next month to take home in a doggy bag?"  Yum!

However, I have been able to sleep better and I think it relates to a couple things.  Less caffeine is one.  Less Call of Duty is another.  More Beth and CJ is the third.  All of these things make me grind my teeth less which in turn makes the ear pressure I was feeling lessen.  It's a theory anyway, and I am going to keep trying it.  Plus, it is probably better if my teeth do not become little nubs in my mouth.

So I am going to enjoy my day off and work on my stress-relieving crossword puzzle.  If I need a 7 letter word for "cause of hysteria", I now know to plug in "superbug".  I can make it fit.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Shouldn't you be working on something?

September 4, 2010

Happy Labor Day weekend.

I just made fun of Beth for misspelling something on June's blog (ptichfork, which people used a long time ago to kill pterodactyls), so the spell checker function on this blog is going to get a workout today.  Karma can be a real bugger.  I will try to correct them all, but I have already misspelled September and "misspelled".    Karma think she so funny.

Beth is not feeling well today.  The mold count around here as spiked and it is kicking her butt.  By "around here", I do not mean that we have allowed the leftovers in the fridge to get so out-of-control that mold is taking over our house.  It is this Ohio Valley weather that drives the nasal area insane. 

Beth works as an aide at the local high school, and as the day went on yesterday, she became a runny nose mess.  You may think that is funny, but it is snot.  All her coworkers noticed that she was not feeling well, but none of them mentioned going home.  So she stuck it out.  One of the kids she helps asked if she was sick since her nose was running so much, and Beth explained that she was not sick, but her brain was melting and coming out her nose.  I did not know that Beth was allowed to listen to Marilyn Manson music on her Ipod while at work.  So we are taking it easy today as Beth slowly turns from a solid into a liquid.

Speaking of Ipods, did you know the new Ipod Touch is 64g?  How many songs does a person need to download?  64g can hold around 14,000 songs.  It would be less if you downloaded movies and such, but that is still a whole bunch.  I could probably come up with a couple hundred songs I like, but never 14,000.

Beth decided she needed to drag herself out of the house today, so we went on a trip to the Cincinnati Museum Center.  Sounds rather like we are quite into smarts to take our child on an educational trip on the weekend, doesn't it?  As it turns out, I had some gift certificates for the Museum Center that we wanted to spend.  The Children's Museum is somewhere we have taken CJ several times, but not so much since he turned 10.  The exhibits are not really for older kids.  However, we read the fine print on the gift certificates and found out they can be used for the food area and gift shops.  Who doesn't love free useless crap-in food form or trinket form.  Therefore, we went down there and had Starbucks, chicken tenders, and barbecue.  Oh, and ice cream.  We also loved the fact that they gave you your change from the gift certificate in cash dollars.  CJ was extremely influenced by this and wanted to take the $10 gift certificate to the window and see what was the cheapest thing on the menu.  "I would like a pack of ketchup.  No, I insist on paying you 10 cents for it."  We have trained him well.

Today begins a 4 day weekend for me.  It is much needed.  I know the holiday is called Labor Day, but I do not want to be working on Monday.  I really can't remember the last time I was off on Labor Day.  Perhaps I will run the vacuum around here to make up for not actually being at work.  Besides, I do need to reduce the mold count so Beth will feel better.  She is currently napping, so if you could all be a little more quiet, I would appreciate it.  Thanks.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Looking through Cindy's drawers did not help at all.

September 2, 2010

Here we are on day two of my life changing ways.  Yesterday, which was day one if you are not good at math, I did okay with the diet part.  I did not eat any chips or popcorn-type substances, and I did not add any salt to my food.  I never really do add salt, but I do love me some chips.  They are dead to me now.  Though I do miss them so.  Why did they leave me so soon?  Okay, where was I?  Oh yeah, salty.  So far so good.  Beth has vowed she is going to try to cook more at home and started last night with a delightful chicken/mushroom/pasta dish.  It was going to be a Marsala kind of chicken thing, but bottles of Marsala wine sell in the range of $19-$29, and what if you mess up?  Also, what if you accidentally drink all the wine before you start the chicken?  We are not wine drinkers, but Beth might turn to a life of booze now that she knows I won't be dying off sooner than later.

As for caffeine, we have been together a long time, so parting will take some doing.  My normal day caffeine intake was 20oz coffee in the morning, 12 oz Diet Code Red late morning, and possibly a Lipton Green Tea (also diet) in the afternoon.  The Lipton has about 1/3 of the caffeine of the Code Red, so I thought I would begin with the morning coffee and the afternoon tea.  Yesterday I was on pace until the afternoon blew up around 3:00.  Some Target visitors came in unexpectedly, which threw off my day's plan and made me run to a second Lipton after the visit.  Who's weak, yeah it's me.  I may have turned out okay if my office partner had kept more change in her desk.  I was going to purchase a 20oz decaffeinated beverage from the pop machine-cost $1.25-but I only had one dollar and one nickel.  She had two nickels in her drawer, and we had together a bunch of pennies.  The machines do not take pennies.  So here were my choices:
  1. turn in the pennies for silver-too much trouble
  2. go to the sales floor and purchase an 8-pack of Gatorade-too much trouble
  3. shake the machine until a drink fell out-dangerous
  4. drink tap water-dangerous
  5. grab another Lipton from the already purchased package in my office
Ding ding ding ding!

Daddy's little helper got me through the rest of the day which concluded with me leaving work 90 minutes late. 

Whenever visitors come in, the last thing they always ask is if they can do anything to help us.  How long do you think I would be employed if I told them to stop visiting? 

Since none of my life changing ways include becoming unemployed, I better not go with this option.

I guess it is obvious that the less stress life-changer did not go well yesterday.  Until I got home that is.  CJ and Beth were their normal fun-loving selves, and good mood and serenity were rather quickly restored.  CJ was aware of Katie's comment about beating your children as a stress reliever, so he did keep hugging me to make sure we were cool.  We will always be cool.

I have also decided to play little to none PS3 to see if that helps with my symptoms.  I catch myself gritting my teeth and saying bad things to the game sometimes, so perhaps it is not the best thing to do for relieving stress.  That has left me with extra time this morning until I have to be at work around 3:00.  I keep thinking about eating, so I will have to check with the doctor to see if getting fat is a good part of my new routine.  I am distracting myself with crossword puzzles and the Internet.  I know puzzles containing cross words do not not sound relaxing, but they really can be.  However, there are some puzzles that make me feel rather stupid. 

Currently, I am trying to figure out, without using the Internet, an 8 letter phrase for confident words.  It starts with "I".  I am smart?  I can do it?  I run fast?  I so funny? 


Uh, anyone for a pedicure?

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Who me worry?

September 1, 2010

I am writing this while I am still waiting for the doctor to finish whatever hole he is on and then call me.  I will schedule it to post on Wednesday, but something I found funny just happened and I will never remember it a whole day from now. 

Beth came home for lunch and left her phone here.  It just rang (buzzed) and I got excited.  It must be the doctor calling her phone since he did not get my message this morning to call our home number instead of Beth's cell.  I answered to hear the dude on the other end ask, "Mike?"  I hesitated.  As if there were any other explanation than that this was a wrong number.  Sure, I had answered Beth's phone, but she does not go by or look like a "Mike".  I am not "Mike".  I am not like Mike.  I am not currently miked.  He did not mean to say Steve but pronounced it "Mike". 

I have a brother Mike, so perhaps dude was calling Beth in a city 100 miles away to find my brother? 

Okay, you're with stupid.  Dude on the phone figured out he had the wrong number before I could say anything.  I guess "Mike's" normal response when he answers the phone is not dead silence.

I have heard from the doctor and he has said that there is nothing to worry about so far.  I do not have any brain lesions, nor does he think I have Multiple Sclerosis.  My blood work is normal, and there are a couple of white spots on my MRI that he will have a neurologist look at.  The radiologist thinks there are nothing, so we are just going for a second opinion.  Sure, there has been no explanation for what my ears feel like, but I am going to try a couple things.  One is less salt.  Okay, I can do that.  Another is less caffeine.  Not really looking forward to that, nor are my employees.  Finally, less stress.  I am going to have to find a good stress release, but the search starts tomorrow. 

What are some good stress relievers that you know of?  Can you think of any for me?   Let's see what happens.